Goricki's prep picks: West Bloomfield, Cass Tech will prevail
Sure, there's the PSL championship game between No. 1 Detroit King and No. 4 Detroit Cass Tech on Friday night at Ford Field.
And, of course, the Prep Bowl — Catholic League Central Division — title game between No. 8 Orchard Lake St. Mary's and No. 15 Warren De La Salle on Saturday night at Ford Field.
But don't forget the big OAA crossover battle between No. 20 Farmington Hills Harrison at No. 3 West Bloomfield on Friday night or a number of battles between 5-3 teams with state playoff spots on the line as well.
Farmington Hills Harrison (7-1) at West Bloomfield (8-0), Friday, 7 p.m. -- We know all about Harrison's proud tradition of 13 state championships under the guidance of John Herrington, who has Harrison guaranteed another playoff appearance with the OAA White championship in its pocket.
West Bloomfield has taken great strides behind the leadership of former Michigan player Ron Bellamy. The Lakers qualified for the state playoffs for the first time since 2008 last year, then won their first playoff game in program history.
Now, West Bloomfield has a chance to go 9-0 for the first time in school history.
"It would be amazing," said Bellamy of a possible unbeaten regular season. "They (Harrison) are well-coached and tough, the most physical and athletic team we have seen all season.
The first thing we have to do is stop the run and don't bite on their play-actions. Offensively, we need to take care of the football and attack the holes in their defense."
The Lakers have outscored their opponents, 320-103, posting three shutouts. Pick: West Bloomfield by 8
Cass Tech (7-1) vs. King (8-0), Friday, 7 p.m., at Ford Field -- The teams met in Week 5, and King came out on top with a 31-28 overtime victory.
Now, can King avenge last year's one-sided 39-7 PSL title game loss to Cass Tech?
Look for Cass Tech junior Rodney Hall to open up the passing game after throwing for just 56 yards in the Week 5 loss. Donovan Peoples-Jones will use the big stage to showcase his skills.
How well will King's Armani Posey perform in his first game at quarterback at Ford Field? He has played well at that position in the last five games, throwing just two interceptions.
Sure, four-star receiver/cornerback Donnie Corley will play well for King, but Peoples-Jones will be better. Pick: Cass Tech by 6
Orchard Lake St. Mary's (6-2) vs. Warren De La Salle (6-2), Saturday, 7 p.m., at Ford Field -- St. Mary's was embarrassed on its own home field in the first meeting between the teams, 31-8 in Week 5 and at one point down 31-0, with De La Salle also owning the upper hand in total yards (326-48) and plays (60-28).
St. Mary's will have something to prove in the rematch and make it much closer. In fact, look for it to win behind a strong game from junior linebacker Josh Ross and running back Justin Myrick. Pick: OLSM by 2
Lincoln Park (5-3) at Gibraltar Carlson (5-3), Friday, 7 p.m. -- This is one of a dozen games with 5-3 teams facing each other with a state playoff spot on the line.
Lincoln Park — which lost 66 straight games from 2006-2013 — has a chance to lock in a spot in the state playoffs for the first time since 2002 with a win.
Carlson has won the last eight meetings between the teams, but this is a much improved Lincoln Park team led by senior quarterback Steve Glenn and junior receiver Devon Carson. Pick: Lincoln Park by 4
Ann Arbor Skyline (4-4) at Dearborn (4-4), Friday, 7 p.m. -- This nonconference battle between Skyline and Dearborn could have the winner getting into the playoffs at 5-4, since both teams have racked up the points, with Dearborn — which advanced to the playoffs in four of the previous five seasons — sitting at No. 25 and Skyline, No. 35.
Look for junior receiver Hunter Rison to make plays in all situations in this one to hand Skyline its first winning season in the program's six-year history. Pick: Skyline by 9